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Project Promotes Role of Volunteerism in Curriculum

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A foundation-backed partnership has launched a national community-service project to assist teachers in incorporating the concept of volunteerism into their daily lessons.

The project, called StarServe, or Students Taking Action and Responsibility in Service, is mailing some 94,000 information packets to principals and superintendents of public and private schools nationwide, according to organizers.

The effort is being underwritten by a $1.5-million grant from the Kraft General Foods Foundation. The Love Foundation for American Music, Entertainment, and Art--a charitable organization founded by the musician Michael E. Love of the Beach Boys--proposed the project, which has also enlisted the help of the United Way of America.

At a White House ceremony last week, StarServe was designated one of the first "Points of Light" initiatives by the Points of Light Foundation, a private organization that takes its name from President Bush's phrase for volunteer efforts.

In a letter that accompanies the StarServe materials, Mr. Bush calls on schools to adopt the program to tap the "energy, idealism, and creativity" of young people to serve their communities.

The materials are designed for8teachers of grades 4 to 12. A guide explains how they can accomplish the three goals of the program: to identify community problems and community-service organizations; to assess student talents, then plan and undertake a service activity; and to evaluate and assess the projects.

At the conclusion of the program next spring, students will be encouraged to write letters to the President describing their work.

More than 1,400 local United Way chapters, along with the National Volunteer Center and local volunteer centers, will provide names of existing community-service projects in need of volunteers.--pw

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